Halle fam­ily put down roots in town

As part of an ex­hi­bi­tion which cel­e­brates Mac­cles­field’s Jewish his­tory, cu­ra­tor Basil Jeuda shares some of his favourite sto­ries

Macclesfield Express - - YOUR VIEWS -

THIS is a photo taken in the 1950s of the four fam­ily direc­tors of the Halle Group of Com­pa­nies Ger­hard and his sons Kalude, Bernard and Harold.

The fam­ily was of Jewish ori­gin, though not prac­tis­ing Jews.

Ger­hard had con­nec­tions with a Jewish or­phan­age in Ber­lin, and he was in busi­ness as a tex­tile agent, be­fore com­ing to Lon­don in 1921, where his brother, Hugo, lived.

Ger­hard es­tab­lished a busi­ness in Hanover Street, Lon­don,W1 man­u­fac­tur­ing dresses.

His sons, in­clud­ing a fourth son Leonard, were all born in Ber­lin.

In the face of ris­ing an­tisemitism in Ger­many, all the fam­ily moved to Lon­don in 1931 and be­came nat­u­ral­ized Bri­tish cit­i­zens in 1938.

The on­set of the War forced Ger­hard to re­lo­cate his busi­ness to Mac­cles­field, ini­tially mov­ing in to the three top floors of Ch­ester Road Mills.

Ger­hard’s mother-in­law was de­ported to a Ger­man Con­cen­tra­tion Camp, though she was sub­se­quently re­leased.

The fam­ily lived at The Beeches, Up­ton, dur­ing the War.

The busi­ness orig­i­nally man­u­fac­tured “medi­umto bet­ter-end gowns” and, from 1943, es­tab­lished Halle Overseas Ltd. which man­u­fac­tured tex­tile fab­rics.

It pros­pered in the town, ini­tially ex­pand­ing into 39 Mar­ket Place, and then later into premises on Beech Lane.

The Halle Group sought to move to a green­field site (in the form of a Gar­den Vil­lage) in Hurds­field, but, in the end, opted to re­lo­cate to Park Green Mills in Jan­uary 1946, where they em­ployed sev­eral hun­dred peo­ple.

By 1973, un­der the name of Halle Mod­els, they made Nightwear, Chil­drenswear, and Lin­gerie, and owned six other fac­to­ries in Stafford­shire, Der­byshire and Le­ices­ter­shire.

Klaude Halle joined the

exclusive RAF in 1943, and in De­cem­ber 1944, whilst based in South Africa, ob­tained his “Wings”.

The ex­hi­bi­tion ‘Cel­e­brat­ing Jewish Life, Art and En­ter­prise in Mac­cles­field Dur­ing World War Two’ com­mem­o­rates the 75th an­niver­sary of the open­ing of the Mac­cles­field Sy­n­a­gogue at 62 Ch­ester­gate, now Charles Roe House, where it is held. The free ex­hi­bi­tion is open Wed­nes­days to Sun­days, 11am to 4pm, un­til May 2.

●» This photo, taken in the 1950s, shows Klaude, Bernard, Ger­hard and Harold Halle

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